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Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny was poisoned with a Novichok nerve agent, Germany’s government says.

It said toxicology tests at a military laboratory showed “unequivocal proof” of an agent from the Novichok group.

Mr Navalny was airlifted to Berlin for treatment after falling ill during a flight in Russia’s Siberia region last month. He has been in a coma since.
His team says he was poisoned on President Vladimir Putin’s orders. The Kremlin has dismissed the allegation.

A Novichok nerve agent was used to poison former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in the UK in 2018. While they survived, another woman later died in hospital.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Mr Navalny was the victim of an attempted murder and there were now “serious questions that only the Russian government can and must answer”.

“Someone tried to silence him and in the name of the whole German government I condemn that in the strongest terms.”

The Kremlin said it had not received any information from Germany that Mr Navalny had been poisoned using a Novichok nerve agent, Russia’s Tass news agency reported.

Chancellor Merkel said Germany’s Nato and EU partners had been informed of the results of the investigation and they would decide on a common and appropriate response based on Russia’s reaction. “The world will be waiting for answers,” she added.

Mr Navalny’s wife Yulia Navalnaya and Russia’s ambassador to Germany would also be informed of the findings, the Berlin government said.

Source:bbc.com


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